Welcome!

News Feed Item

Iridescent Announces Winners of the Gravity Design Challenge, Science Contest for Teens

Iridescent, a science and technology education non-profit, announced the winners today in the Gravity Design Challenge, an online science contest for teens, inspired by the Warner Bros. Pictures movie GRAVITY, starring Academy Award® winners Sandra Bullock and George Clooney. The winner received a family trip to New York City for the GRAVITY movie premiere tonight, and a chance to see the stars.

“With women in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) fields earning more than 33 percent more than their counterparts in non-STEM fields, there should be ample incentive for girls to pursue these subjects. Yet, many young women are still under-performing in these areas. We need to get creative in our approaches because, often, we’re competing with cultural biases that tell girls science and tech are boys’ work,” said Tara Chklovski, founder and CEO of Iridescent. “Iridescent is excited about the opportunity to illuminate the power of STEM education for teens through powerful role models and through our hands-on learning programs that match students with experienced mentors.”

Iridescent hopes that thirteen-year-old Eiley Hartzell-Jordan from Carrboro, North Carolina, and her friends, will be inspired by Sandra Bullock’s character, Dr. Ryan White, an engineer in the film GRAVITY. Hartzell-Jordan was awarded first place in Gravity Design Challenge for her extraordinary entry. Based on a requirement to include three design elements: 1) a launcher, 2) a transfer mechanism, and 3) an orbit well, the open-ended design competition was no small feat for a 13-year-old to win. Throughout the competition Hartzell-Jordan received guidance from her Iridescent mentor, Bonnie Lei, a Harvard biology student. Mentorship is a key component of all of Iridescent’s STEM-learning programs.

Fourteen-year-old Austin Tyler from Long Beach, California placed second in the competition, while 16-year-old Christopher Zamora from Los Angeles received third place. The winning teens each spent more than ten hours of time on their creations, and demonstrated curiosity and persistence to try new approaches. All runners-up will receive four free tickets to experience GRAVITY in IMAX® 3D at their local IMAX theater.

The month-long Gravity Design Challenge was hosted on Iridescent’s online science and engineering platform - Curiosity Machine. The Curiosity Machine enables mentoring scientists and engineers to give customized feedback to children on their engineering design projects. More than 340 participants gathered at 14 family-science learning events around the country throughout the month to learn about gravity and aerospace engineering.

Iridescent is at the forefront of the STEM education movement, combining blended-learning technology tools with cutting edge, project-based science and engineering content. Volunteer mentors, including professional engineers from NASA, faculty and students at the University of Southern California (USC) provided feedback to Gravity Design Challenge participants through the submission period. A panel of experts from the astrophysics field judged the entries.

About Iridescent
Since 2006, Iridescent, has implemented a scalable model of science, technology and engineering exploration that has helped more than 22,000 underserved families through mentorship and hands-on family science programs. Iridescent’s mission is to use science, technology, engineering and math to develop persistent curiosity and to show that knowledge is empowering.

About Gravity
Academy Award® winners Sandra Bullock (“The Blind Side”) and George Clooney (“Syriana”) star in “Gravity,” a heart-pounding thriller that pulls you into the infinite and unforgiving realm of deep space. The film was directed by Oscar® nominee Alfonso Cuarón (“Children of Men”). Dr. Ryan Stone (Bullock) is a brilliant medical engineer on her first shuttle mission, with veteran astronaut Matt Kowalski (Clooney) in command. But on a seemingly routine mission, disaster strikes. The shuttle is destroyed, leaving Stone and Kowalski completely alone—tethered to nothing but each other and spiraling out into the blackness. The deafening silence tells them they have lost any link to Earth…and any chance for rescue. As fear turns to panic, every gulp of air eats away at what little oxygen is left. But the only way home may be to go further out into the terrifying expanse of space. “Gravity” was written by Alfonso Cuarón & Jonás Cuarón, and produced by Alfonso Cuarón and David Heyman (the “Harry Potter” films). Chris deFaria, Nikki Penny and Stephen Jones served as executive producers. In theaters October 4, 2013.

IMAX® is a registered trademark of IMAX Corporation

More Stories By Business Wire

Copyright © 2009 Business Wire. All rights reserved. Republication or redistribution of Business Wire content is expressly prohibited without the prior written consent of Business Wire. Business Wire shall not be liable for any errors or delays in the content, or for any actions taken in reliance thereon.

Latest Stories
"We host and fully manage cloud data services, whether we store, the data, move the data, or run analytics on the data," stated Kamal Shannak, Senior Development Manager, Cloud Data Services, IBM, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 18th Cloud Expo, held June 7-9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY.
Machine Learning helps make complex systems more efficient. By applying advanced Machine Learning techniques such as Cognitive Fingerprinting, wind project operators can utilize these tools to learn from collected data, detect regular patterns, and optimize their own operations. In his session at 18th Cloud Expo, Stuart Gillen, Director of Business Development at SparkCognition, discussed how research has demonstrated the value of Machine Learning in delivering next generation analytics to imp...
DevOps at Cloud Expo – being held November 1-3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA – announces that its Call for Papers is open. Born out of proven success in agile development, cloud computing, and process automation, DevOps is a macro trend you cannot afford to miss. From showcase success stories from early adopters and web-scale businesses, DevOps is expanding to organizations of all sizes, including the world's largest enterprises – and delivering real results. Am...
With the proliferation of both SQL and NoSQL databases, organizations can now target specific fit-for-purpose database tools for their different application needs regarding scalability, ease of use, ACID support, etc. Platform as a Service offerings make this even easier now, enabling developers to roll out their own database infrastructure in minutes with minimal management overhead. However, this same amount of flexibility also comes with the challenges of picking the right tool, on the right ...
The 19th International Cloud Expo has announced that its Call for Papers is open. Cloud Expo, to be held November 1-3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA, brings together Cloud Computing, Big Data, Internet of Things, DevOps, Digital Transformation, Microservices and WebRTC to one location. With cloud computing driving a higher percentage of enterprise IT budgets every year, it becomes increasingly important to plant your flag in this fast-expanding business opportuni...
With over 720 million Internet users and 40–50% CAGR, the Chinese Cloud Computing market has been booming. When talking about cloud computing, what are the Chinese users of cloud thinking about? What is the most powerful force that can push them to make the buying decision? How to tap into them? In his session at 18th Cloud Expo, Yu Hao, CEO and co-founder of SpeedyCloud, answered these questions and discussed the results of SpeedyCloud’s survey.
The Internet of Things will challenge the status quo of how IT and development organizations operate. Or will it? Certainly the fog layer of IoT requires special insights about data ontology, security and transactional integrity. But the developmental challenges are the same: People, Process and Platform. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Craig Sproule, CEO of Metavine, demonstrated how to move beyond today's coding paradigm and shared the must-have mindsets for removing complexity from the develo...
SYS-CON Events announced today that MangoApps will exhibit at the 19th International Cloud Expo, which will take place on November 1–3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. MangoApps provides modern company intranets and team collaboration software, allowing workers to stay connected and productive from anywhere in the world and from any device.
Large scale deployments present unique planning challenges, system commissioning hurdles between IT and OT and demand careful system hand-off orchestration. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Jeff Smith, Senior Director and a founding member of Incenergy, will discuss some of the key tactics to ensure delivery success based on his experience of the last two years deploying Industrial IoT systems across four continents.
Redis is not only the fastest database, but it is the most popular among the new wave of databases running in containers. Redis speeds up just about every data interaction between your users or operational systems. In his session at 19th Cloud Expo, Dave Nielsen, Developer Advocate, Redis Labs, will share the functions and data structures used to solve everyday use cases that are driving Redis' popularity.
Basho Technologies has announced the latest release of Basho Riak TS, version 1.3. Riak TS is an enterprise-grade NoSQL database optimized for Internet of Things (IoT). The open source version enables developers to download the software for free and use it in production as well as make contributions to the code and develop applications around Riak TS. Enhancements to Riak TS make it quick, easy and cost-effective to spin up an instance to test new ideas and build IoT applications. In addition to...
Predictive analytics tools monitor, report, and troubleshoot in order to make proactive decisions about the health, performance, and utilization of storage. Most enterprises combine cloud and on-premise storage, resulting in blended environments of physical, virtual, cloud, and other platforms, which justifies more sophisticated storage analytics. In his session at 18th Cloud Expo, Peter McCallum, Vice President of Datacenter Solutions at FalconStor, discussed using predictive analytics to mon...
Identity is in everything and customers are looking to their providers to ensure the security of their identities, transactions and data. With the increased reliance on cloud-based services, service providers must build security and trust into their offerings, adding value to customers and improving the user experience. Making identity, security and privacy easy for customers provides a unique advantage over the competition.
In his session at @DevOpsSummit at 19th Cloud Expo, Yoseph Reuveni, Director of Software Engineering at Jet.com, will discuss Jet.com's journey into containerizing Microsoft-based technologies like C# and F# into Docker. He will talk about lessons learned and challenges faced, the Mono framework tryout and how they deployed everything into Azure cloud. Yoseph Reuveni is a technology leader with unique experience developing and running high throughput (over 1M tps) distributed systems with extre...
"We've discovered that after shows 80% if leads that people get, 80% of the conversations end up on the show floor, meaning people forget about it, people forget who they talk to, people forget that there are actual business opportunities to be had here so we try to help out and keep the conversations going," explained Jeff Mesnik, Founder and President of ContentMX, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 18th Cloud Expo, held June 7-9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY.